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Title: Resistance-Guided Mining of Bacterial Genotoxins Defines a Family of DNA Glycosylases
ABSTRACT Unique DNA repair enzymes that provide self-resistance against therapeutically important, genotoxic natural products have been discovered in bacterial biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs). Among these, the DNA glycosylase AlkZ is essential for azinomycin B production and belongs to the HTH_42 superfamily of uncharacterized proteins. Despite their widespread existence in antibiotic producers and pathogens, the roles of these proteins in production of other natural products are unknown. Here, we determine the evolutionary relationship and genomic distribution of all HTH_42 proteins from Streptomyces and use a resistance-based genome mining approach to identify homologs associated with known and uncharacterized BGCs. We find that AlkZ-like (AZL) proteins constitute one distinct HTH_42 subfamily and are highly enriched in BGCs and variable in sequence, suggesting each has evolved to protect against a specific secondary metabolite. As a validation of the approach, we show that the AZL protein, HedH4, associated with biosynthesis of the alkylating agent hedamycin, excises hedamycin-DNA adducts with exquisite specificity and provides resistance to the natural product in cells. We also identify a second, phylogenetically and functionally distinct subfamily whose proteins are never associated with BGCs, are highly conserved with respect to sequence and genomic neighborhood, and repair DNA lesions not associated with a more » particular natural product. This work delineates two related families of DNA repair enzymes—one specific for complex alkyl-DNA lesions and involved in self-resistance to antimicrobials and the other likely involved in protection against an array of genotoxins—and provides a framework for targeted discovery of new genotoxic compounds with therapeutic potential. IMPORTANCE Bacteria are rich sources of secondary metabolites that include DNA-damaging genotoxins with antitumor/antibiotic properties. Although Streptomyces produce a diverse number of therapeutic genotoxins, efforts toward targeted discovery of biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) producing DNA-damaging agents is lacking. Moreover, work on toxin-resistance genes has lagged behind our understanding of those involved in natural product synthesis. Here, we identified over 70 uncharacterized BGCs producing potentially novel genotoxins through resistance-based genome mining using the azinomycin B-resistance DNA glycosylase AlkZ. We validate our analysis by characterizing the enzymatic activity and cellular resistance of one AlkZ ortholog in the BGC of hedamycin, a potent DNA alkylating agent. Moreover, we uncover a second, phylogenetically distinct family of proteins related to Escherichia coli YcaQ, a DNA glycosylase capable of unhooking interstrand DNA cross-links, which differs from the AlkZ-like family in sequence, genomic location, proximity to BGCs, and substrate specificity. This work defines two families of DNA glycosylase for specialized repair of complex genotoxic natural products and generalized repair of a broad range of alkyl-DNA adducts and provides a framework for targeted discovery of new compounds with therapeutic potential. « less
Authors:
; ; ; ;
Editors:
Simmons, Lyle A.; Bush, Karen
Award ID(s):
1928918
Publication Date:
NSF-PAR ID:
10350046
Journal Name:
mBio
Volume:
13
Issue:
2
ISSN:
2150-7511
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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